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Header - Family Tip 12 - 10 Nevers of a Good Parent

"Train up a child in the way he should go, and ... he will NEVER depart from it."
(Prov 22:6) 


1.  Never make a promise you don’t intend to keep. It brings discredit on you and teaches your child to lie.

2.  Never shout. To rear a child you must control him. As humans we are only controlled by qualities we do not have ourselves. If there is one quality a child does not possess, it is calm, which is the direct opposite of the extreme mobility of his nature, his impulsive impressionability. Calmness controls him, not shouting.

3.  Never deceive. “Give me your whistle; you will see what fine music I can make.” The child, with no defense, gives you his whistle and you put it in your pocket: “Now with the whistle there, you can’t annoy us anymore.”

4.  Never punish trust. By saying, for example, if you want the child to take some disagreeable medicine: “Oh this is good! Drink it, you will see.” The child sips it and pushes away the deceiving cup. You have failed him in your words. A few scenes of this kind and the child will lose all confidence in those who speak to him. If we wish to be believed, we must not abuse belief.

5.  Never do yourself what the child, with a little time and ingenuity, can do himself; otherwise, he will never learn to take the initiative. On the contrary, confront him as soon as possible and as often as possible with tasks that are beyond him and which are capable of challenging him a bit so that he learns to gauge his strength, to remain humble because of non-success, and eager for struggle because he wants to conquer the obstacle.

10 Nevers of a good parent collage6.  Never tolerate backtalk to a command, or grumbling, or any argument about it. Never take back a prohibition especially if the child tries to work its recall by tears and coy maneuvering.

7.  Never present a task to the child as completely beyond his capabilities as in “Could you do that? You’ll be too afraid to do that?”—so that he gets the idea of a possible sidetracking of the issue or a sliding out of it altogether. No, tell him squarely what to do as if it were just an ordinary, simple matter. “Do this. Go there, please.” In this way the child will not question his ability to do what is asked.

8.  Never seem to attach importance to little scratches, bumps, and bruises he gets (naturally, proper attention should be paid to real needs). The child often cries when he hurts himself just to get attention, and being pitied makes him think he is a more interesting individual when injured. If you do not appear excited, he will understand that it is useless to make a tragedy of the affair. Care for the hurts that need care, and far from magnifying the case, explain that it isn’t anything much: “You will have many others! Be brave and try to have more nerve about it!” The child grows calm.

9.  Never inflict a humiliating punishment in the presence of others, except in the rare case that might be needed to punish a deeply rooted pride. Aside from such a case, you would be degrading a child beyond reason: “Look how ugly he is!” “How clumsy you are!” Or what is worse—“Look at your brother, see how good he is!” Such comparisons are odious and only excite jealousy.

10.  Never flatter: “Isn’t he a darling!” The child knows this only too well. Encourage him, but don’t praise him. To praise him [in this instance—Ed.] is to admire him for an advantage he has without merit on his part; to encourage him is to congratulate him on meritorious effort. Never tolerate the adulations of people who visit you either. 

 


Adapted from Raoul Plus, S.J.’s Christ in the Home (Colorado Springs, CO: Gardner brothers, 1951), 138 – 140. It is a treasure chest of advice for Catholics on the practical and spiritual concerns of raising a family.

 

Click here for a printable list of these 10 "Nevers" of a Good Parent!

 

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for May 25, 2020

“I will take away not the grace but the feeling of grace...

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May 25

 

“I will take away
not the grace but the feeling of grace.
Though I will seem to leave you
I will be closer to you.”

Our Lord to St. Mary Magdalene de’ Pazzi


My Mother, I will stand with you on OCTOBER 10, 2020

Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

Pope St. Gregory VII

In 1073 at the death of Alexander II, the people of Rome cri...

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Pope St. Gregory VII

Pope Gregory VII was born Hildebrand in Tuscany, Italy. Little else is known of his early life. Hailed, historically, as one of the greatest of the Church's pontiffs and one of the most remarkable men of all time, his name, Hildebrand, meant “bright flame”. Those who hated him, which were many, interpreted the name as “brand of Hell”.

Hildebrand was a Benedictine monk, for a time living in Cluny, from whence he certainly gleaned the monastery’s ideal of societal reform.

As a cleric, he became chaplain to Pope Gregory VI, and a few years later, under Leo IX was made Cardinal Deacon. A man of outstanding energy and insight, Hildebrand became a power in Rome. It is greatly due to him that the practice of electing popes through a college of cardinals was established.

In 1073 at the death of Alexander II, the people of Rome cried out for the holy genius who had helped steer the Church for twenty years, “Hildebrand for Pope! Holy Peter wants Hildebrand, the Archdeacon!” Once before the holy monk had eluded the tiara but this time a proper college of cardinals, seconding the popular cry, induced him to accept an honor duly his.

Hildebrand assumed the name Gregory VII, and threw his energy and zeal into a continued reform, especially fighting simony (the sale of ecclesiastical posts) and clerical incontinence.

He confronted Emperor Henry IV head- on about his practice of choosing men for ecclesiastical positions. On meeting with dogged resistance, the pontiff finally had recourse to excommunication which drastically curtailed the proud monarch’s power, ultimately bringing Henry on foot to the Pope at the Castle of Canossa. Because of Henry’s rebellious obstinacy, Pope Gregory saw fit to leave him out in the cold for three days before receiving and reinstating the royal penitent.

But Henry failed to make any true personal reform and alienated his princes who elected another ruler. Still, he later rallied and went as far as electing another Pope, a Clement III, calling down upon himself another sentence of excommunication. He also attacked and entered the Eternal City in 1084, which forced Pope Gregory into exile. Henry had his protégée “pope” crown him Emperor. Ultimately repelled by an army fighting for the true pope, the Emperor Henry left Rome, but complications sent Gregory VII again into exile, this time to die.

His last words before his death were a summary of how he had lived, “I have loved justice and hated iniquity, therefore I die in exile.”

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

There was once a young country wife who practiced devotion t...

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Mary and the Simple Country Wife

There was once a young country wife who practiced devotion to Holy Mary, just as her mother had taught her to do. This simple young lady considered herself fortunate to have married a handsome soldier. Little did she know that her soldier-husband had made a deal with the devil, that he would sell his wife for a certain sum of money.

One crisp, autumn morning the couple went out for their customary walk. Oddly, this time the young man insisted on heading towards the forest. It was at the forest where he intended to deliver his young bride over to the devil.

On their way to the forest, the couple passed in front of a Church dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The wife, overtaken with a desire to enter the church begged her husband to allow her to pray a Hail Mary in that church.

As the young lady entered the church, Holy Mary came forth from it, taking the form of the wife and accompanied the man into the forest.

When they at last approached the devil at the forest, he said to the man, “Traitor! Why have you brought me instead of your wife, my enemy, the mother of God?”

“And you,” said Mary, addressing the devil, “how have you dared to think of injuring my servant? Go, flee to hell.”

And then, turning to the man, Mary said to him, “Amend your life, and I will aid you.”

She then disappeared and that wretched man repented, amended his life and became a husband worthy of his simple country wife.

From the Glories of Mary, by St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori.

 

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There was once a young country wife who practiced devotion to Holy Mary, just as her mother had taught her to do. This simple young lady considered herself fortunate to have married a handsome soldier.

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